by Julian Walker

As we get ready for the 2019 training, we are delighted to announce some changes and new developments —top of the list is that a long time friend and colleague, Trina Altman is joining us as visiting faculty and will teach a full weekend of workshops as part of the training, which will also be open to the public. This means that any of our existing graduates can also sign up for these very special sessions as continuing education!

If you haven’t heard the buzz yet about Trina, she is an innovator who brings a serious fascination with anatomy and biomechanics to understanding movement through the lens of both Pilates and Yoga —which she then shares with a lot of warmth, fun and experiential practicality.

Here is her official Bio:

Trina Altman, BS, PMA-CPT, received her training through STOTT PILATES® and is an E-RYT 500. She’s the creator of Yoga Deconstructed® and Pilates Deconstructed®, which take an interdisciplinary approach to foster an embodied understanding of yoga and Pilates and their relationship to modern movement science. Trina has presented at Kripalu, the Yoga Alliance Leadership Conference and Yogaworks, among others. She also created and taught a Pilates continuing-education course for physical therapists and was part of the faculty for the Brain Longevity conference at UCLA. Trina was a finalist in the Next Pilates Anytime Instructor competition in 2017. Her work has been published in both Yoga Journal and Yoga International. Her book, Yoga Deconstructed®: Transitioning From Rehabilitation Back Into The Yoga Studio is slated to be published by Handspring Publishing in December 2019. She works out of Los Angeles at Equinox and The Moving Joint. For more information on Trina and her online classes and courses, visit Follow her on Instagram at: @trinaaltman & on Facebook at: Trina Altman Yoga and Pilates.

These are the workshop descriptions of what she will share as part of the training:

Yoga Deconstructed®: Creativity Meets Science
Each workshop can be taken individually. A certificate of attendance is awarded to students who take all four workshops. Qualifies for 12 Yoga Alliance CEC’s.

Workshop 1
Movement Science Meets Asana – A New Paradigm
Are you finding that your students often struggle to do even the most basic poses in your classes? Or, if they’re able to do all the poses, do they complain of wrist, back or hip pain?Unfortunately, most people are desk bound and their only movement for the day is during yoga class, so their bodies aren’t well adapted for the large ranges of motion required. Conversely, many of our students who are able to practice all the poses are still in pain, because they aren’t balancing out their extreme ranges of motion with stability and strength. If you’re struggling with helping your students become more embodied and want strategies to create a safer class environment, this workshop is for you.

This Yoga Deconstructed® workshop will teach you:

  • How to apply modern movement science to your yoga teaching.

  • How to bring functional movement into your classes, while still feeling like you are teaching yoga.

  • An exercise science based approach to sequencing to prepare the body for movement and minimize the risk of pain and injury.

  • Understanding the components of a pose, such as directions of movement at each joint, loading principles, and biomechanics.

  • An introduction to taking an interdisciplinary approach to teaching yoga and how to add techniques from other modalities to your teaching toolbox.

Workshop 2
A New Beginning : An Updated Approach to Prepare Your Students for Asana
In yoga classes, we’re trying to create an environment that nurtures your mind as well as your structure. However, many of our students don’t feel safe in classes, because they’re afraid of doing the poses “incorrectly” or receiving an unwanted hands-on adjustment. Additionally, in most yoga classes, a typical warm up doesn’t facilitate joint differentiation. For example, in cat/cow most students will flex and extend their spine in the places that already have the most mobility, rather than finding movement in places that are underused. Beginning your classes with somatic exercises and sensory feedback methods before a corrective exercise such as cat/cow, helps your students become aware of movement blind spots that may contribute to pain in more advanced poses later in class.

This Yoga Deconstructed® workshop will teach you:

  • How to choose somatic exercises to encourage active ranges of motion, promote dynamic full body movement, and help prepare the body for larger static poses.

  • The application of myofascial release techniques to help your students embody the anatomical concepts taught in traditional yoga, so they can better understand the purpose of the pose.

  • How to apply the pain science paradigm* to empower your students to trust that their bodies are robust and resilient.

  • Strategies to introduce variability and neuromuscular re-education into class that help facilitate tissue resiliency, neuroplasticity, and new motor patterns.

*for a definition of pain science paradigm go to:

Workshop 3
Corrective Exercise: Introducing Creativity & Critical Thinking Into Your Classes

Modern postural yoga uses poses that in theory prepare the body for a peak pose at the end of class. However, exercise science has shown that there is a more effective way. By incorporating corrective exercises into our classes, we can better prepare the body for more challenging asanas, while bridging the gap between our sedentary lifestyle and yoga asana. This also helps to reduce the risk of injury. Also, asana is a highly specialized form of movement that often emphasizes aesthetics over function. Through corrective exercise, we can balance out our practice, by including movements that don’t exist in yoga poses, thus reducing our risk of pain and overuse injuries. If you’ve been trying to incorporate corrective exercises in your teaching, but have been struggling with selecting the right exercises and sequencing them within a class, then this workshop is for you. Oftentimes, alignment cues are thought to be synonymous with safety. However, not all alignment cues correlate with biomechanics or function. This is why critical thinking skills can make you a more effective teacher.

In this Yoga Deconstructed® workshop, you will learn to apply critical thinking when teaching, creating and selecting corrective exercises.
This will help you understand:

  • How to choose the right corrective exercises for your students’ needs and based on what you see in the room.

  • How to use corrective exercises to prepare your students’ tissues and joints for specific asanas.

  • The application of corrective exercise to improving function in everyday life and athletic performance.

Workshop 4
Putting It All Together: A Revolutionary & Non Dogmatic Approach to Asana

Have you been trying to keep up with the latest research, but you aren’t sure how to apply it to your classes? Are you looking for a way to differentiate yourself and specialize in movement, so you can establish credibility, be the go-to expert in your community, fill your classes, and get more private clients? Do you just want to know how to keep your students safe? If so, you’re in the right place. Unlock your creative potential and movement smarts by learning how to combine applied anatomy with the transformative aspects of yoga. This updated, evidence based formula will keep you current in your teaching, prepare you to foster a safe environment for multi-level classes, help you attract more private clients, and build your following.

This workshop will synthesize everything you’ve learned in the previous workshops, so you can:

  • Structure classes and layer exercises in a fun and challenging way, while keeping the heart of yoga.

  • Teach from a skills based approach, instead of lineage based approach.

  • Feel confident teaching complex poses and exercises in multi-level classes.

  • Incorporate exercises and theories from multiple modalities into your teaching.

  • Help your students build strength and stability to balance out their yoga practice.


You can sign up soon for any or all of these workshops via the Santa Monica Yoga website here (link coming)  —and you can find out more about the full AHEM training this weekend of workshops is part of HERE.